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Deep Learning Curriculum: Do Less, Well.

Knoweldge Rich: Humanity Rich...

Boughton Heath Academy  has a distinctive ethos: a ‘whole child’ approach and a commitment to developing confident, enquiring children who have high self-esteem and are inspired by the world in which they live.

Charles Darwin provides our model for learning: as a passionate enquirer, Darwin modelled skills of observation, scrutiny, questioning, comparison and contrast, ordering and evaluation.  He was utterly absorbed by the world in which he found himself, challenged by its complexity and inspired to push boundaries of understanding.  His starting point was the particular, the local and the immediate context; in the same way, our curriculum centres upon local and first-hand experience as a catalyst for our children’s imaginations.

Our vision is to develop a community of growing independent learners who are fundamentally motivated by life, as was Darwin.  Irrespective of the background or ‘ability’ of the child, Boughton Heath is committed to developing children’s skills as ‘connection-makers’, to lead them towards becoming adults with the capacity and confidence to interpret their experience and to make sense of it in a complex world.

This distinctive approach is, in many ways, counter cultural: we prize authenticity and personal growth over quick ‘success’ and being overtly ‘impressive’.  We find that only mushrooms grow quickly, and that slowing down is an intrinsic element of our ethos. Through the development of fine motor and coordination skills, children can learn to engage at depth in the here and now.  At a deeper level, there is a spiritual level to our curriculum, in that from deeper ‘seeing’ of the world around them, comes quality engagement and subsequently the desire to write and respond, and to write and respond well.

Our approach to learning, for ourselves as teachers, as well as our children, needs to be sensitively grown and nurtured over time, through planned sequences of first-hand (or vicarious) experiences and reflection.  This is an opportunity to be bold, in a supportive community of teaching and learning.  Together, we are committed to leading children towards becoming independent learners who are inspired by their lives and who can express their complex responses to it. 

Curriculum Rationale

Our curriculum map has been produced using research into how children learn. We have carefully considered where to position the experiences, skills and knowledge we believe our children need, in order to be successful on their learning journeys. We have taken the 2014 National Curriculum and linked each curriculum knoweldge base to ensure clear consistent progression.

The topics we have produced are definitely not carved in stone. We will evaluate annually the success of each theme, within the National Curriculum. This will maintain the integrity of our curriculum coverage, continuity of skills development and the rich and varied experiences we expect to provide for all pupils. Each sequence has been carefully thought through to maximise links between subjects.

Basic Skills

We value the acquisition of basic skills as we see these as the scaffolding for all learning. These skills are vital for enabling all pupils to access the whole curriculum and to enhance future economic and social wellbeing. It is the responsibility of all staff to teach and extend the basic skills in Mathematics and English.

Work will be carefully planned to ensure continuity and progression. We are aware that pupils start at different points and progress at different rates and consequently appropriate targets will be set for differing groups of children and individuals. All pupils can expect quality first teaching in phonics, reading, writing and number.

Children’s progress will be monitored and assessed on a termly basis. Whole school tracking procedures are in place and action will be taken to support those whose progress is slow or those pupils falling behind expected levels.

Boughton Heath Academy recognises the roles that all parties must play in order to support continuous improvement in basic skills. Dialogue with parents will be open and honest indicating achievement and efforts in basic skills. The school will provide guidance and information for parents to enable them to be partners in pupils’ learning.

Ignition Events

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Ignition events provide the start o a topic in order to create awe and wonder. We aim to ignite the children's passion and enthuisam for the topics and subjects they will be learning. 

Deep Learning

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We do less, well. Overall we have stuctured most of the National Curriculum into our long term plan. However, teachers will be covering less but in more detail. This is an important factor in our curriculum as we use our learning wheel to structure knoweldge within topics. 

The Learning Wheel

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In conjunction with key research, we have developed a learning wheel to structure our learning. It takes teachers thought to a deeper level of learning. We focus on deep learning and not simply covering alot only to do it in a shallow way. 

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